Why cyberattacks aren't harming hospital finances

No one can deny data breaches' effects on hospitals and health systems, but cyberattacks don't seem to have hurt healthcare's profit, reports Politico.

Experts have warned of the long-term fiscal dangers of cyberattacks. "Increasingly, boards of directors are aware of the monetary penalties for breaches and the reputational damage they create," Boston-based Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center CIO John Halamka writes in an upcoming book on cybersecurity, according to Politico. "Healthcare organizations work hard to gain the trust of the patients. A single major security event can destroy years of good will."

But Politico took a closer look at the stock of Indianapolis-based Anthem and Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems after their respective 2015 and 2014 breaches. After Anthem released the news of its breach on March 13, 2015, stock opened at $146.83. A few days later, Anthem's stock traded at $153.25. Currently, the health insurer's stock has dipped to $127.48, but it "doesn't seem to be as a result of cybersecurity-related worries" — instead, the dip seems to be a result of Anthem's attempt at a merger with Cigna, according to Politico.

Community Health Systems reported its breach Aug. 20, 2015, and its stock was at $56.56. The next day, it only dipped to $55.67. Although CHS' stock is currently at $11.11, the dip appears to be a consequence of the company unloading multiple hospitals.

Cyberattacks aren't making a dent in hospitals' revenue, either. In February 2016, Hollywood (Calif.) Presbyterian Medical Center fell victim to a ransomware attack. But the medical center's quarterly revenue hasn't significantly suffered. In the first quarter of 2016, Hollywood Presbyterian reported $67.5 million in quarterly revenue, which is slightly above its first quarter of 2015 revenue, according to Politico.

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